Converting Driving Time to Leisure: Subjective Evaluation of Innovative Seating Positions
Authors: Julia Pelzer, Matthis Hötter, Claus Bertram Bonerz, Torben Böddeker, Lutz Eckstein, Stefan Ladwig
Abstract: One of the current challenges of the automotive industry is the launch of automated vehicles. At SAE Level 4 (SAE J3016, 2021), the automation performs the entire driving task, including monitoring the environment on predefined ODDs. Thereby, the driver becomes a passenger who can use the driving time to pursue non-driving-related activities (NDRAs). While previous research gives insights into the anticipated needs of future users regarding the performance of activities (Gold et al. 2015; Pfleging et al., 2016), there is still a lack of research in terms of future vehicle interiors to enable high comfortability while performing these activities. Next to various design aspects, human factors play an important role: Which seating positions are acceptable while carrying out NDRAs? Are seating positions and constructs such as trust or perceived safety correlated? Since the thematic breadth of these questions requires a systematic approach, we conducted a literature review and interviews in preparation of the actual participant study. Based on literature, we selected work and leisure trips as relevant scenarios for the subsequent qualitative interviews. Here, n = 30 people were asked which NDRAs they would like to carry out during those trips. Based on the results, we defined two scenarios for the participant study in a highly dynamic driving simulator: “Relaxing” on the way to work and “Chatting” during a leisure trip. A total of n = 36 participants experienced different relaxing positions or seating rotations and evaluated the subjective comfort, perceived safety, suitability and trust in automation. The results point to a conflict of objectives between the perceived safety and the utility of seating positions for performing NDRAs. Following, in order to enable future passengers to use the full potential of Highly Automated Vehicles interior configurations this large field of research touched by this study needs further exploration and elaboration.
Keywords: Automated Driving, Perceived Safety, Comfort
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